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Irish Insights


Players with character

Notre Dame players have stood by their coach since things started going south with a home loss to Navy to start November.

The players have said coach Charlie Weis and the staff have prepared them to play each week.

Nose tackle Ian Williams did say he felt Notre Dame was outschemed against Navy that was pretty much the only negative remark against the coaches.

The Irish showed their support for Weis when they had him lead the team onto the field for the final home game against Connecticut, and Weis said he has appreciated the players staying with him through a difficult three weeks.

"It means we recruited the right guys, the guys that have a lot of character," Weis said. "Most college kids have some except for the true leaders of the team, like the top player, the Jimmy Clausen type, have a tough time taking on the accountability issue and taking the blame and putting it on their own shoulders rather than letting it go in another direction.

"They don't need to do that. I know I'm the head coach of the team. So ultimately the responsibility of things that go wrong fall on my shoulders. So they don't need to do that.

"But the fact that they're saying those things tells you a lot about the character of those guys, because they don't need to be doing it. And I don't ask them to do it. I don't want them to do it. But the fact that they are doing it shows you the character of the kids that we bring in here."

When Weis was asked whether the players would be up for going to a bowl game after such a trying season, the fifth-year Irish coach said he hasn't discussed that with the team.

"I would not have my finger on the pulse of that question at this time," Weis said.